养狗养猫能延缓衰老?BMJ最新论文给予“反驳”
2017/12/18
长期以来,有人认为,动物的陪伴可能与人类健康有关。不久前,探索君报道的《单身养只狗,死亡风险降低33%》一文就表达了类似的观点。然而,12月13日,发表在BMJ上的一篇论文反驳了这一观点。该研究称,拥有一个宠物似乎并不会减缓衰老的速度。


图片来源:网络

调查显示,有超过10%的老年人称,养宠物是他们主要的伴侣资源。研究人员认为,有必要进一步进行调查,是否养宠物会影响衰老相关的生物标志物?

对此,来自伦敦大学学院和剑桥大学的科学家小组开展了调查,使用了来自English Longitudinal Study of Ageing(一项正在进行的纵向研究)的资源,分析了来自超过8,700位、平均年龄为67岁成年人的数据。借助个人面谈、自填问卷以及护士评估等,这些数据每两年被收集一次。

研究中,有三分之一的参与者拥有一个宠物。其中,18%的人养狗,12%的人养猫,3%的人养其他宠物。

在考虑了一些相关变量(如吸烟、饮酒)后,研究人员发现,没有证据表明养任何类型的宠物与“行走速度、肺功能、从椅子上站起来、握力、平衡、三种炎症标志物、记忆或抑郁”有强烈关联。

事实上,养宠物同时具有潜在的“积极健康影响”和“消极健康影响”。前者包括宠物陪伴带来的心理健康改善、定期遛狗增加体力活动对体重和心脏健康带来的影响;后者包括宠物死亡带来的悲伤等。

总结来说,科学家们认为,至少关于英国老年人的这项研究显示,动物的陪伴似乎与衰老的生理和心理生物标志物没有关联。不过,他们也强调,这只是一项观察性研究,因此,没有明确的结论可以得出因果关系。

参考资料:

Owning a pet does not seem to influence signs of aging

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  • Associations of pet ownership with biomarkers of ageing: population based cohort study

    Abstract Objective To examine the prospective relation between animal companionship and biomarkers of ageing in older people. Design Analyses of data from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, an ongoing, open, prospective cohort study initiated in 2002-03. Setting Nationally representative study from England. Participants 8785 adults (55% women) with a mean age of 67 years (SD 9) at pet ownership assessment in 2010-11 (wave 5). Main outcome measure Established biomarkers of ageing in the domains of physical, immunological, and psychological function, as assessed in 2012-13 (wave 6). Results One third of study members reported pet ownership: 1619 (18%) owned a dog, 1077 (12%) a cat, and 274 (3%) another animal. After adjustment for a range of covariates, there was no evidence of a clear association of any type of pet ownership with walking speed, lung function, chair rise time, grip strength, leg raises, balance, three markers of systemic inflammation, memory, or depressive symptoms. Conclusion In this population of older adults, the companionship of creatures great and small seems to essentially confer no relation with standard ageing phenotypes.

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